If you are having problems with your car but you are not sure what the issue is, the best thing to do is to take it to a mechanic, and they will go through everything and find out what the “cause” of the problem is, once the cause has been identified and repaired you will be back on track.
Or if you are having computer issues, the screen keeps freezing or it’s not behaving as it should, the best thing to do is a reboot, that turns it off and restart the computer and this often fixes the problem.
When it comes to our health often a reboot is what is needed to get our health back on track, our bodies have a lot to contend with in the modern world that it did not have to deal with in the past, things like processed foods, environmental toxins, increased stress, decreased sleep and more time spent on computers and phones rather than being active.
This is where the 30 day paleo reset comes in!
While modern life has changed, our genes are still basically the same as they were thousands of years ago, which means that our bodies can have trouble adapting to modern life. This can lead to symptoms like weight gain, fatigue, anxiety/ depression, hormonal imbalances like PMS or low testosterone in men, digestion problems like I.B.S and many chronic diseases that are common these days but were rare in the “old days”.
A 30 day paleo reset program is designed to improve your energy, sleep, digestion, increase your metabolism, improve mood and generally have you feeling so much better than you did 30 days earlier!
While it may seem amazing to get these results just from changing your diet and lifestyle for 30 days, I have seen so many people make incredible transitions at this time. If there are any lingering health problems at the end of the 30 days this is when some functional pathology testing is a good idea to take a deeper dive to investigate what may be wrong.
At the end of the 30 day paleo reset program we can start to introduce the foods that you eliminated one by one, to see if any create negative reactions.
I have divided this into three sections to make this as simple as possible and also eliminate any “grey” areas.
Foods to Enjoy!
The first section is the foods that you can eat as much as you like of, there is no counting calories or rationing different macronutrients, we are just focusing on eating good quality foods. This is not a fast or a calorie restricted weight loss program (though if you have weight to lose this is a great way to do it)
Meats and Poultry: This includes beef, lamb, chicken, pork, duck, kangaroo or other game meats, ideally the meats will be free range and grass fed, but if this is not available don’t let that stop you from doing the program.
Organ Meats and Bone Broths: These are some of the most nutritious foods available both for their nutrient and amino acid content, with the organ meats, in particular, it is important that they are organic …. and if you don’t like the taste you can hide them in soups and stews!
Fish: Especially fatty fish like mackerel, sardines, salmon, and tuna which have a much higher omega 3 content than regular white fish. Wild fish is preferable.
Eggs: These should be definitely free range! The advice only a few years ago was to limit eggs due to cholesterol, but this has been well and truly been proven to be a myth and eggs are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet
Vegetables and Salads: Most people do not eat enough vegetables and it is something that everyone can focus on eating more of, they provide so many vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, and fiber.
Fermented Vegetables: This includes sauerkraut and Kim Chi, they are excellent sources of beneficial bacteria and great for gut health
Traditional Fats: That’s right fats are in the “healthy category” and while they have been demonized for 30 years for causing obesity and heart disease the science shows that they are not the cause and the fact that most populations around the world have eaten a higher fat diet for thousands of years. The good fats include coconut oil, olive oil, macadamia oil, animal fats like duck fat, lard, and ghee.
Herbs and Spices: These are not only the best way to flavor your food but are an important source of nutrients.
Fruit: While fruits are nutritious they are still high in natural sugars and you do not want to overeat them, especially if you have weight or low blood sugar issues. I recommend 1-3 serves a day
Nuts and Seeds: These are nutrient powerhouses and I recommend eating a handful a day of unsalted natural nuts and seeds.
Coffee and Tea: These are ok in moderation but avoid the dairy milk and sugar that many people like to add! If you experience fatigue or insomnia it would be a good idea to avoid for the 30 days due to the affect that caffeine has on your adrenals.
Vinegar: Apple cider vinegar is the best choice and can help stimulate digestive function
Dark Chocolate: While dark chocolate is nutritious and often touted as a superfood, I would limit to only small amounts of 2-3 squares a night
Restaurant food: I recommend limiting eating out while doing the 30 day reset or sticking to health-conscious restaurants. The main problem with many restaurants is that they use industrially processed oils like vegetable oil and canola oil which are high in omega 6 fats and cause inflammation
Now for the controversial foods to avoid list! Some of these foods like industrially processed seed oils I believe should never be eaten, but some of these foods like dairy and legumes some people tolerate very well, and they can be nutritious, but for some people they create inflammation and the best way to find out if they do is to avoid them for 30 days.
Dairy: This includes milk, cheese, and yogurt from cow’s, goats or sheep, the one exception would be ghee as it has had the lactose and casein removed.
Grains: This obviously contains all the gluten-containing grains like wheat, spelt, rye, barley, oats plus other grains like rice and quinoa. While many people feel better for avoiding gluten grains for the 30 days we are going to avoid all grains and then you can test grains like rice and see how they make you feel after eating them
Legumes: This includes all beans, legumes, and peanuts
Sweeteners: This includes both natural and artificial sweeteners like honey, rice syrup, maple syrup, Splenda, stevia and any of the other concentrated sweeteners, it is easy to be “addicted” to the sweet taste and the need to have something sweet, the 30 day reset will help to overcome the need for sweets (this does not mean we can never enjoy treats)
Processed and Refined Foods: The general rule is that if it comes in a box or a packet, or contains any ingredients that sound like chemicals do not eat it. This includes packaged protein bars and other foods marketed as health foods, plus highly processed sauces and condiments.
Industrial seed oils: These are highly processed and heat treated oils that are high in inflammatory omega 6 fats, this includes canola oil, rice bran oil, soybean oil and other “vegetable” oils
Soft drinks, soda’s and juices: These are highly processed and contain concentrated sugars
Alcohol: In any form (don’t panic, it’s only 30 days!)
So there it is! Don’t worry about the “Paleo” name, this is basically just a real food eating program for a month, and the types of foods that people would have normally ate only 200 – 300 years ago, we are not trying to replicate what the cave man or woman may have eaten but just focussing on real unprocessed foods.
If you need help with the program or not sure how to get started let me know and we can set up a consultation to tailor a program just for you, this can include meal plans and recipes. For help with this, you can email me firstname.lastname@example.org
If you do this for a month I guarantee your health and wellbeing is going to improve in many ways, at the end of this time if you are still having any health problems I can organize some functional pathology testing to uncover what is the cause of the problem.
Michael is head consultant at Planet Naturopath - Functional Medicine and Nutrition Solutions.
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