Welcome to another edition of our Mailbag posts! This series focuses on questions that are frequently asked by the UPG community. Have a lingering question? Ask it here and we might feature you in future posts!
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My biggest problem is my love for skim milk, LOL. It is very hard for me to give that up. Also I drink a lot of water but it’s hard for me to just drink tap water. Is there anything else I can drink?
I definitely understand the need for something a little more refreshing and flavorful than tap water. One of my favorite things to do is to infuse water with fruit, vegetables and herbs. Not only do the flavors taste delicious, but the vitamins and minerals in these superfoods also leach into the water giving you a nutritional boost! All you have to do is add chunks of your desired produce into the water and let it infuse. Some of my favorite flavors are cucumber/lemon/mint, blueberry/basil, or strawberry/basil/cucumber. The combinations are endless – if you find any ones you love, let me know in the comments!
Some other good choices are teas (drink it iced with mint and lemon if you’re looking for a refreshing option), La Croix sparkling water, and kombucha.
If you’re looking for milk replacements, I would highly recommend nut milks. Almond milk is my
favorite, but there are all kinds of different varieties you could try. You can buy these at the store, but if you don’t read your labels carefully, you may end up with some questionable fillers like carrageenan or added sugars. Always look for the unsweetened version
You can actually make your own nut milks at home! Not only is it relatively easy to do, but you control the quality of ingredients that you put in it. Check out this article for more information.
The recipe archive also offers a lot of fun and creative beverage options. The Raspberry Lemonade recipe is a favorite of mine. Cheers!
What are the best resources/stores to purchase grass-fed meats?
When adopting a Paleo lifestyle, it is highly recommended that you consume grass-fed/pastured meat. If you’re not sure what that means (all of the labels and buzzwords can definitely be confusing), we have written a whole guide here. Not only does this type of meat hold many more health benefits for you than conventionally-raised meat, it is also much better for the animal and the environment.
Finding grass-fed meat can sometimes be a challenge depending on where you live. If you’re used to shopping solely at your local grocery store, it can also be difficult (or nearly impossible) to know the quality of meat you’re getting.
Your best bet is to go straight to the farmer. If you live in the U.S., the site Eat Wild is a valuable resource. They also have some international locations and are continuing to build their international database. On this site, you can search your location and it will show you all of the farms near you that offer grass-fed beef. You can also seek out your local butcher or farmer’s markets. These are all great places to start.
When you find a place that offers quality meat, talk to the contact person directly and ask them about their meat. Be sure to ask if the cows have been grass-fed AND grass-finished. Grass-finished means that they were fed a 100% grass-fed diet. Because of some loopholes in the labeling system, the “grass-fed” label you may see on some meat doesn’t necessarily mean that the animal ate nothing but grass. In some cases, the cow is fed a grass diet for a percentage of their life, but then switched to a grain-based diet near the end of its life to fatten it up.
Be sure to ask your local meat provider specific questions. You may feel a little awkward being so inquisitive, but this is definitely your right as a conscious consumer!
If you feel like you have exhausted all local options, there is still hope! The company Butcher Box is a monthly subscription service that sends 100% grass-fed beef straight to your door. For $129/month, you can get 7-10 pounds of meat (~20 meals worth) sent to you. Butcher Box’s mission is to make grass-fed/pastured/organic meat available for everyone. It is definitely worth looking into if you can’t come by grass-fed meat near you.
I’ve been on the Paleo diet for 7 days and don’t really see any progress. I’m not feeling that great either. Please help.
In general, it is normal to feel like you’re not making progress for the first week or so. Depending on what your diet was prior to trying Paleo<, your body is more than likely going through some huge changes and adaptations right now.
We like to call this the “carb flu.” This “flu” hits when your body is used to primarily burning carbohydrates for energy but it is in the process to switching to primarily using fats. As your body learns how to burn these fats, you may feel some adverse symptoms. It could feel like you’re fatigued, like your brain is foggy, or just like you’re moving slower than normal.
This is normal and it is okay. Don’t stop eating Paleo! After about two weeks, your body should begin to stabilize into this new “normal” state and you’ll start feeling better than ever. Patience and perseverance is key here. There are some things you may be able to do to combat this carb flu. The first is to eat more. As long as you keep it Paleo, this may help your body adjust more quickly. Adding healthy fats – think coconut oil or avocados – can help as well.
I can’t stress this enough – if you used to eat the standard American diet, and are now in the beginning stages of Paleo, this feeling is normal! Keep with it, and the perseverance will pay off in just a few weeks.
If you’d like help deciding what to eat, sign up for our meal planning service, Paleo Meal Plans. Meal plans, recipes, shopping lists, access to a private Facebook group, and help from our Paleo Nutritionist available to you every week. It doesn’t get easier than that!
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