Happy Thanksgiving! Of course, paleo foodie that I am, I couldn't resist taking a shot of a loaded plate with my Droid. (You stay classy, Primal Kitchen.)
I am deeply grateful for the paleo, primal, and Crossfit communities - especially that they are so vibrant in our virtual world. :) Though it's been so thrilling to finally run into some traditional food folks in the flesh in the last couple of months, I know that there is no way I would have made progress or learned as much as I have without the collective wisdom and shared tips of fellow paleo people all around the world - and that includes my readers. THANK YOU for sharing your stories, tips, and recipes and for offering up support! I hope that your Thanksgiving holiday weekend offers lots of warm and memorable moments with your loved ones.
And...speaking of Thanksgiving holiday weekend, I'll wager that a few of you might be braving the crowds today for Black Friday deals. Bravo for you, I say! But even better, if you've stopped relying on sugar, grains, and industrial oils in your diet - if you've "gone paleo" - you are giving your loved ones a better gift than any you could have picked up at the big box store, even if you were first in line camped out with a tent and power generator.
As you know, I am the mother of two daughters, aged (almost) 2 and 4. While I know that (despite my wishes) I can't protect them from everything, I know that I can do my best to protect them from a lot of unnecessary ills. If I make it a priority for us to eat foods that our bodies are meant to use as fuel, and I ensure that my girls get lots of fresh air activity outdoors, I've gone a long way to protect them from:
- Childhood obesity. If kids' day-to-day menus are chock-full of nutrient dense foods (and inherently lower carb than standard industrial diets), their metabolisms will operate as intended and won't degrade over time.
- Inactivity. Fueling kids with quality food gives them the long-lasting energy needed to support lots of healthy playtime, climbing, running, and anything else their little bodies wish to tackle! Meanwhile, overdoses of sugar and other less desirable ingredients (especially from processed foods as a dietary staple) only serve to deplete energy and offer up a blood sugar roller coaster.
- Childhood disease. There's still a lot we're learning about cancer, diabetes, and other illnesses that shouldn't be a part of any kid's life - but it's certainly becoming clear that wholesome nutrient dense diets partnered with outdoor play and healthy Vitamin D stores result in healthier populations on the whole.
As an adult, "going paleo" has a similar set of benefits! If you've been waffling or thinking about "going paleo", I urge you to consider giving it a 30 day try! You'll be amazed by the difference in how you feel (even short term), and even more by the long-term benefits reaped.
When you and your kids are eating the food you're designed to eat - and getting sunshine, fresh air, and exercise, you'll live longer and have more energy to do the things you love, and the "best you" is a gift that keeps giving!
Going paleo is one of the greatest gifts that you can give your loved ones - especially in the legacy it leaves your kids!
This post also appears on the collaborative blog Highbrow Paleo.