Going Primal

I started trying to live by the Primal Blueprint since last week. If you haven’t heard of the Primal Blueprint, the crux of it is simple.

  • No grains
  • No processed sugars
  • Eat lots of plants and animals
  • Move frequently at a slow pace (walking and hiking)
  • Sprint once in a while (every 7–10 days)
  • Lift heavy things twice a week

It’s as simple as that. We’ve known for a while that cutting carbs will cause you to lose weight, but Mark Sisson also made that claim that grains are pro-inflammatory. While that seemed hard to fathom at first, I noticed after 4 or 5 days of eating Primally, the eczema on the palms of my hands went away. It was a huge change. I’ve been fighting that for about 18 months. I got creams from a doctor, used lots of lotion and used bath salts in hopes of making it better to no avail. After a few days of carbohydrate restriction, it cleared up. I continue to see improvement on other parts of my body where I’ve had eczema for longer and over the next few days, those body parts started to clear up as well.

Also due to carb restriction, I’ve lost a little bit of weight and my body fat percentage has gone down about 1%. That’s not a huge change, but my clothes are looser and my belt is getting cinched up tighter than before. My love handles are visibly smaller.

I’ve also noticed I don’t get as hungry as quickly as I used to. As your body gets used to fewer carbs, it gets better at using your existing fat reserves and that’s why you’re losing weight. Fat burns more slowly than sugar, so I don’t feel the need to eat as much as I used to. I’ve found I wake up less hungry in the mornings after a high protein/high fat dinner.

It’s been a little annoying trying to eat around other people, especially at work. In Japan, rice is a part of life. Everyone expects you to eat it. While rice isn’t as bad as wheat-based foods, it’s still a lot of carbs that your body doesn’t really need. It’s even harder because at the schools where I teach, the children are told they have to eat at least a little of everything, and apparently, if their teachers don’t eat rice, they’re going to start questioning authority. So, I’m expected to eat rice, potatoes, beans and corn all in the same meal even if I don’t want to. It’s definitely making me think hard about packing my lunch. I have to explain on a daily basis why I’m not eating the rice, soy beans, corn, noodles or bread that’s being stuffed down everyone’s throats. Everyone asks if I’m “on a diet”. It’s more like I’ve changed my lifestyle. At first, I looked into the Primal Blueprint as a diet, but after seeing my eczema disappear and seeing how you can feel satiated longer on a low-carb diet, I’m a real believer in the Primal Blueprint. Just need to start doing more rigorous exercise bits of it!

Further reading

Check out Mark’s Daily Apple for almost daily recipe ideas and tidbits about living Primally.

Published on February 5, 2016


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