Tips for creating a healthy meal plan – Paleo diet

A Paleo diet is based on the meals eaten by hunter gatherers, who had a diet of meat, fish, nuts, berries, seeds, fruit and vegetables. Hunter gatherer people were free from modern day lifestyle diseases such as diabetes and cancer. As they lived before a time of farming and agriculture, hunter gatherer people did not eat grains, dairy or processed foods. In a world where food is high in sugar, unhealthy fats, wheat and dairy, many are turning back to the whole foods which shaped the Paleo diet in order to embrace its health giving properties.

Why create a meal plan

If you’re new to the Paleo diet, it is often best to construct meal plans. This is because our modern world is so filled with processed foods that until a new way of eating becomes a habit, it is helpful to plan your meals and buy in your foods for the first week. This will help you to map your path into a new way of eating. Knowing what your meals are going to be will keep you on track with healthy foods and snacks.

Remember that a new diet can sometimes feel hard, and your body will crave some of the foods you used to eat. During the first week you might crave sugar. It will take time for your body to adjust to your new, wholefood diet plan. Reassure yourself that you are eating healthily and giving your body what it needs. A meal plan will help you to remain committed to your new diet.

What to include in your meal plan.

Paleo diets include healthy breakfasts which contain foods such as eggs, meat and vegetables. Lunch might contain salads, stir fries, lettuce wraps, meat or nuts. For dinner you can include meat, fish, chicken, vegetables, nuts, avocado, fruit and sweet potatoes.

Remember to choose vegetables instead of bread or rice. Coconut oil is a healthy option for frying your food.

If you feel hungry during the day and have regular snack times, remember to include nuts, fruit, boiled eggs, or packages of raw vegetables in lunchbox so that you can much on these instead of your regular carbohydrate snacks.

Ingredients to place on your shopping list

When shopping for your Paleo diet leave out anything that has been made in a factory. This will simply make you feel awful. If you are worried about missing some of your old favorites, remember to look for zucchini spaghetti or cauliflower rice. You can use lettuce wraps with steak strips, salsa and avocado. Roasted sweet potatoes are a delicious replacement to french fries.

Clear all unhealthy foods such as cakes, chips, cookies, ice creams or pizzas from your home, and replace them with nuts, berries, oranges, bananas or baked apples.

Include meats such as fish, chicken, turkey, lamb and beef on your new shopping list, along with a wide variety of nuts, seeds, berries, fruit and vegetables. Make water your drink of choice, then add a couple of healthy smoothies to give you the antioxidants you need. You could add nut butters for a creamy taste.

Once you’ve stocked your home with healthy, life giving foods, you can create a protein filled meal plan which will leave you feeling healthy, strong and energized. While creating a healthy meal plan remember to include a wide range of healthy fats to ensure optimal brain functioning. As you notice your energy levels begin to increase and your health begin to flourish, your diet will become more familiar and easy to stick to. Your weekly planning will become more familiar and you’ll realize that you’re not on a diet, you’ve made a lifestyle choice. All you have to do is stick to it.

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