Sunday, November 19, 2006


As I write this, I’m wrapping up my eighth week on the Paleo diet. I am twelve pounds lighter. I think it’s safe to say that this has as much to do with being calorie-deprived as with any unique properties of the “Paleo way.” My goal with the diet is not to lose weight, but to control my cholesterol without statin drugs. I won’t know how I’m doing on that score until I get my next blood test, which I will probably schedule for sometime this week.

I have not been a perfect Paleo dieter, but I have had better-than-average self discipline. When I take the trouble to plan ahead, I’m eating very well. When I don’t, I scarcely eat at all. At the sophisticated end of the spectrum, you’re supposed to fill a lot of time with planning, shopping, cooking, storing, and transporting your ideal Paleo food. At the other extreme, you can do this diet in two laughably simple steps:

  1. Sit down to a meal.
  2. If your food has sugar, salt, grains, legumes, dairy, corn, or potatoes in it, don’t put it in your mouth.

Will you be hungry? Oh yes, you will. Will you be jealous when your wife prepares quiche? Affirmative.

You’re allowed to eat as much lean meat as you can choke down. I was a vegetarian before this, because I think factory farming is bad for people, animals, and the environment. Since I went Paleo, I have only purchased organic, vegetarian-fed meat, which is a half-measure at best. I still don’t know where this meat comes from. I do not have a clear conscience about this, and I’m not sure what to do long-term. If it turns out this diet is doing nothing for my blood, I’ll be a vegetarian again in a New York minute. But what if it turns out I’m in the best health of my life? I’ll have a dilemma on my hands.

More on this developing story as it — develops.

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