Here is a brief list of Dos and Don’ts to help you figure out what you can and can’t have during the Challenge:
Eat *Real Food*:
Healthy Fats/Oils — e.g.: Olive oil, Coconut oil, grassfed butter, avocado oil, nut oils (macademia, walnut, etc.), animal fats (tallow, lard, etc.), ghee (clarified butter).
Eat foods with very few ingredients, all pronounceable ingredients, or better yet, no ingredients listed at all because they’re fresh and natural.
There are so many choices within these categories — broaden your horizons and try new foods!
Read labels. Watch out for hidden ingredients — especially sugar!
Desert means you can pick it with your hands from a tree or bush or don’t eat it!
Grains — including: bread, rice, pasta, corn, oatmeal, and any gluten-free psuedo grains (quinoa, etc.)
Legumes — beans of all kinds, lentils, and peanuts (no peanut butter!)
Dairy — UNLESS it is from Grassfed sources. This includes butter, cheese, yogurt, milk and cream for your coffee. When in doubt, leave it out.
Sugar of any kind* — including: maple syrup, agave nectar, Splenda, and definitely no granulated, brown sugar, molasses, HFCS, etc.
*Honey — is allowed in extreme moderation. Remember, the more you use, the slower your progress will be. Don’t fall for “paleo cheesecake”, “paleo brownies”, “paleo cookies”, etc., unless you want to be a “paleo diabetic”.
Processed Foods – this includes protein shakes, processed bars like Zone and Balance bars, dairy-free creamers, etc. There are exceptions to every rule, but I make the exceptions, so ask first.
Unhealthy Oils — any vegetable oil high in polyunsaturated fatty acids and Omega-6; vegetable, canola, corn, soybean, peanut oil, etc.
Alcohol** — in any form.
**You are allowed TWO (2) days during the challenge where you can imbibe without penalty. Use them wisely. Here is the rub: what are you willing to do for yourself? Sometimes the very best gift is the strength of conviction.
Not sure? Ask if it is permissible.
Check out our Tips for Success post for more ideas to get you started.
Cheat days are for cheaters, REWARD DAYS are fine when you’re done, but not when it’s a challenge! Right? I mean, for gawds sakes, how much of a ‘challenge’ is it to CHEAT?! Get your head on straight, suck it up and do good for yourself. You are the only one that can do this for you, so don’t rip yourself off by finding more rationalizations for eating sh!t-sugar filled foods than you already have at your disposal. There is no such thing as ‘challenge’ cheesecake.