How Going "Almost" Paleo Saved My Health. And My Sanity.

Well, it finally happened. I have officially lost 21 pounds since January! This is genuinely a sweet victory for me. Other weight loss attempts in the past 13 years have been defeating and frustrating as I would lose about 17 pounds and then plateau. While I know that this often happens, I would eventually lose motivation and start cheating as the plateau would go not just weeks, but months. 
However, this time when I hit that plateau, I was able to maintain what I was doing for three long months and finally! Another 4 pounds have finally come off. I am on my way once again.  
The reason I was able to persevere through this long plateau is that our family made a commitment together to make permanent changes in our relationship with food. We did the research and made radical changes to our diet — I like to say we are #almostpaleo — and the improvements in our health have been amazing.  
We love our food. Who doesn’t? We have to eat to survive, and living on those specialty shakes and bars alone isn’t going to cut it on a long term basis. 
We were shocked to learn about what was actually going into our bodies. But we did learn many more excellent ways in which to make healthy, delicious improvements.  
To start, we gave up all the white menaces: sugar, flour, pasta, and rice. They are no longer in the house. I cleaned out the pantry of processed foods, including vegetable and canola oils. No sodas, juices, or yogurt. Everything I buy is thoroughly checked for hidden sugars (you’d be AMAZED at what is hidden in all kinds of foods!). I basically have had to learn to cook all over again — but I have to say, the menu has gotten tastier, and we have found many new things we love to eat. I even started growing my own vegetables and herbs, and have been doing a lot of experimenting with baking (hey – I still love sweets!). 
And most importantly — my grocery bill has not increased – even while buying organic and ‪paleo‬ items (nut flour, oils, etc.)
When I had my physical in March, just two months after starting our new lifestyle, I got encouraging results from my doctor. My blood work showed that my cholesterol dropped 30 points! I hope I can be free from taking statins after 10 years without worry.
After six months, I have forgotten how much I liked Diet Coke. My constant cravings for bread and sugar are gone. Interestingly, my hot flashes have also disappeared. I sleep better. I have more energy.
My Hubs and The Youngest have also had very positive results.  
It does take some detoxing to restart your system. While it was difficult at first, we made it through the detox, and eating well is a way of life. Oh – and I’m not perfect: I still hate to exercise. I am even indulging in some ice cream this summer. I probably drink too much coffee and ice tea. I may never have a completely toned physique. I am still too cheap to buy a gym membership or join a yoga class (Trust me on this one – I don’t think yoga pants for me is appropriate in public!).  
What we are doing is possible for anyone. I am as apathetic as they come, and I have found that it is achievable, even for me. I am still sane. Maybe even more so.  
If you’d like more details on what we’re accomplishing, I’m going to do a series of #almostpaleo posts soon here on the blog. This is no way a sales pitch — I’m not selling anything. I want to share what I’ve learned with others, especially to those who are also discouraged and unmotivated as I was about living healthy.
I hope you will join me. And spread the word. (Yoga pants — you’re safe. For now.)

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