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The benefits of the Paleo diet and tips

I've been feeling pretty blue lately, so I thought I'd write about something that makes me happy - the paleo diet. It makes me happy because changing my diet has changed a lot of things in my symptoms and my life, not just one area like a medication would.

I urge all of you to watch this video (or listen). It really got me thinking about my diet differently, as Dr Wahls speaks about protecting your brain and mitochondrial function through food.


Don't get me wrong, it was a huge pain in the butt. Society is set up in a way that eating healthy and getting fresh food is a lot harder than convenient, processed food. Add to that being ill, and it becomes a struggle. I basically had to reprioritize food in my budget and in my time. Now my partner and I will meal prep together on a sunday and I will choose the meals for the week. It's actually really nice. Putting food first has made us spend fun time together in the kitchen, and even her health has improved.

So here are my tips and if you are able, I really recommend you give it a go. It helped me SO MUCH with brain fog. OMG. And my energy, lethargy, nausea as well.

- Reprioritise: We only have so much energy. It does take time to do the research, figure out what works for your life and start to make the grocery lists. I had to reprioritise my time and I had to increase my food budget. It took me a month or so before I could fully commit to it because of this.

-Make the time and meal prep with a carer: Designating a day for meal prep is really helpful. I'll sit on the stool and chop vegetables while my partner prepares a couple big batches of dinner for us to have over the week. Basically what I'm saying is, you will have to make more time/energy for food than you would have before.

-Use a Cookbook. Like a physical one: This limits your options from being overwhelming and you can easily choose a couple meals to have over the week. I recommend Cooking for Life by Dr. Wahls and Part Time Paleo (I don't remember the author, sorry).

-Get some helpful appliances if you can, especially a Nutribullet: A nutribullet can make going paleo or low carb a lot easier. You can make smoothies, salsas, bullet proof coffee and it's very easy to clean compared to other blenders. Other things that might help are food processors, vegetable spiralizers, a sous vide machine for easy, delicious meat (seriously, it's like the best kept secret) and a dehydrator.

-Make smoothie bags: I think Jamie Oliver has a good recipe for them. Basically, you put your ingredients for a smoothie into a single serve bag and put it in the freezer. Then all you have to do is pull it out, put it in the nutribullet and add liquid.

You may be wondering "Why paleo?" I was recommended paleo by a doctor, but I think it's just a nice framework. It cuts out a lot of the inflammatory food groups (dairy, processed food, carbs etc.) and it's emphasis on nutrition and fresh fruits and vegetables is great for your body. I also try to follow Dr.Wahl's suggestion as much as possible. She's very into Neuroprotective Nutrition, which is not only fascinating, but I think could be really helpful for CFS. I balked at the idea of changing my diet in the beginning and tried it reluctantly. I moaned about my love of cheese and pizza and how I already didn't have the energy to cook. Honestly it changed my whole opinion.

I always felt guilty about eating because I have CFS. Because I couldn't exercise, I payed more attention to my weight. But going paleo/changing my diet has shown me that diet doesn't have to be strictly about weight and it doesn't have to be scary. It's helped me look at food as a good thing, I get excited to go through cookbooks and to have my meals. Before I always felt a little ashamed, or driven solely by our meager budget. Having good food makes me feel like I respect myself more.

Lastly, I did have a little proof of concept. I had to be admitted to hospital for 3 days where I had to have "normal" hospital food. My brain fog became unbelievably bad again. I could barely hold a conversation while I was in hospital without losing my train of thought.

If you want more info, I recommend the documentaries "Fed Up" or "The Magic Pill". :)

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