the 30-day challenge

Beginning today, I will be following a version of the Paleo diet known as the Primal Blueprint for thirty days.  By making this public statement, there’s no turning back.  You know, the whole accountability thing and all.  I have quite the incentive to follow through on this commitment. You see …my daughter, Kim, was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis quite a few years ago. She is currently able to function for the most part but battles with the unexpected relapses along with the ongoing search for the “perfect” medication. Her younger sister, Jen, has been following the Primal / Paleo program along with her husband, Steve, for several months now.  They are so impressed with how great they feel …so full of energy.  And they really feel that there are so many food choices …they never feel hungry or deprived.

In her research, Jen learned of a doctor who had been totally disabled from MS and many years ago was handed a grim prognosis …that she would never be able to walk again. Or ever work again. Dr. Terry Wahls took matters into her own medically educated hands and came up with the Wahls Protocol. Check it out here. She now is fully functional and requires no medication. Pretty amazing, huh? I guess it’s true that we are what we eat.

So…. Jen is challenging us girls to join her in her quest for more healthful living. She has really done her homework on this and truly believes that this way of eating could actually change Kim’s life and future.  We will not be following the Wahls Protocol at this time.  It is very restrictive, eliminating all dairy and eggs.  As well as nightshade vegetables, such as eggplant, potatoes, tomatoes and assorted peppers.  Kim may decide to eliminate additional foods in the future, but we are hopeful that the removal of sugar and grains will be sufficient to improve her general well being.

We will be following the Primal Blueprint way of eating, which was created by Mark Sisson in 2009. In theory, this diet allows only those foods that our primal ancestors would have eaten.  We will be eliminating all processed foods and refined sugar.  We will not eat any type of grains, thereby eliminating gluten.  We will be focusing on eating more protein, natural fats, and plenty of organic vegetables and fruit.

Here is some interesting reading if you are so inclined.  The Primal Blueprint 8 Key Concepts & an overview of the Primal Blueprint found on Healthline.com.  After reviewing Mark Sisson’s philosophy, I can say that I am not the least bit intimidated by this.  (I say that now …on day one)  But really, there are so many possibilities for delicious satisfying meals.  Over the next thirty days, I will be posting only recipes that fall under the Primal guidelines.  I am so hopeful that my daughter, Kim, discovers that she feels a marked improvement in her general health and experiences a sense of accomplishment by gaining some control over her future.  I am thrilled that she has accepted her sister’s challenge (proud mom moment here) and so happy to say that my good friend, Judi, will be joining in the fun.

For some help in getting started, check out the helpful hints in my challenge cheat sheet.  For now, here’s a sample of the deliciousness that can be enjoyed while following this program.

I prepped some asparagus, carrots, cauliflower and sweet potatoes.  Sprinkled them with olive oil, fresh dill, salt and pepper.  Roasted them in a 400°F oven for about 35 minutes.  Once cooled, I arranged them on a platter with some prepared hummus.  I then added green olives, cherry tomatoes, cubed feta, fresh figs and cherries.  Of course, raw veggies would work so well here, too.  Especially since raw foods are recommended.  The possibilities are endless.  Serve with some grain-less crackers (Whole Foods sells a delicious cracker made totally of seeds) or hearty potato/beet chips.

We may be so impressed with the outcome of our experiment that we consider a longer term. Who knows?  But for now, thirty days it is.  Anyone care to join us?

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