"I saw few die of hunger; of eating, a hundred thousand." -Ben Franklin

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

First Post!

Hey everyone!

I've been contemplating starting this for quite a few months, and am really glad I finally decided to do it. This blog pretty much will chronicle my experience eating Paleo/Primal both here at college (University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia) and at home (in Westchester County, New York, right outside of NYC).

So here's a little bit of background:
I've been eating Paleo for over a year now (February 1, 2010!... minus two months of almost-Paleo vegetarianism, but I'll discuss that in a bit), but only recently learned that my eating habits aren't totally extreme and actually have a name (well, names...)/philosophy behind them. In the last month or so, I've read every Paleo/Primal book available for Nook (including works by Loren Cordain, Art DeVany, Robb Wolf, Frank Forencich, and Mark Sisson), subscribed to every Paleo/Primal blog I can find via twitter, and have become even more health/nutrition-obsessed than I thought possible.

Changing my eating habits changed my life. I've struggled with weight for pretty much ever (I blamed genetics, but it was completely my fault: I was a carb-addict, and working at Dunkin Donuts for 3.5 years certainly didn't help!), and every time I went on a diet (always Atkins-- did that for the first time when I was thirteen and lost 30 pounds), I'd put all the weight back on... plus a lot more. (At my heaviest, when I was sixteen, I was 70 pounds and 6-7 sizes bigger than I am now.) With diabetes and heart disease running in my family, I knew my eating habits and inactive lifestyle would eventually lead to severe health problems... hence the millions of dieting attempts.

Enough was enough. February 1, 2010, I decided (for probably the trillianth time), "Today is the first day of the rest of my life." And, for the first time, that came true. One year and fifteen days later (and 50+ pounds and 5-6 sizes smaller), I can happily say I've successfully avoided all breads, sweets, starches, pastries, grains, and other types of fake food! (And for those of you who are in/have gone through college, you know how fake food temptations are everywhere!) My lifestyle now can be summed up by one of my favorite Jack LaLanne quotes: "If man made it, hate it."

However, I went through a two-month period of vegetarianism (though staying low-carb... the only "man" food I ate was tofu) after reading Michael Pollan's books, various newsletters by nutritionist Jay Robb, and reading a plethora of articles on the subject. I didn't feel satisfied, however-- I was tired all the time, experienced almost-daily digestive problems, and found myself snacking more than usual.
Then a few weeks ago, my dad (a fellow nutrition/health enthusiast) sent me Dr. Cordain's The Paleo Diet, which I devoured (no pun intended) one night... and haven't looked back to vegetarianism since. Ever since then, I pretty much went back to eating the way I did for 10 out of the last 12 months. I feel more energized, my digestive problems are gone, and I stopped snacking. Paleo/Primal, for the win!

So that's my story. I'm really excited to finally do this blog-- I'll be posting recipes, book reviews (currently reading Why We Get Fat by Gary Taubes... will review when I'm done!), restaurant reviews (on the rare occasions that I don't eat in my dining hall), and thoughts on other nutrition and health issues.

So what was for dinner tonight? Baby spinach salad with beef, chopped egg, tomatoes, diced onions, and pecans, drizzled with EVOO. (You can't really see the tomatoes or onions, but they're under all the fantastic beef!)

Quote of the day:
"We don't know all the answers. If we knew all the answers, we'd be bored, wouldn't we? We keep looking, searching, trying to get more knowledge." -Jack LaLanne


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